For 2009, IATA said it maintained its forecast of an $11 billion net loss.

“Between 2000 and 2009, airlines lost $49.1 billion, which is an average of $5.0 billion per year,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

European carriers will generate the largest losses of any region at $2.5 billion. This is an improvement over the $3.5 billion loss that the region’s carriers are expected to post in 2009.

Industry revenues are expected to rise by $22 billion (4.9%) to $478 billion in 2010, compared to 2009.

“The worst is likely behind us. For 2010, some key statistics are moving in the right direction. Demand will likely continue to improve and airlines are expected to drive down non-fuel unit costs by 1.3%. But fuel costs are rising and yields are a continuing disaster. Airlines will remain firmly in the red in 2010 with $5.6 billion in losses,” said Bisignani.

Following a decline of 4.1% in 2009, passenger traffic is expected to grow by 4.5% in 2010. A total of 2.28 billion people are expected to fly in 2010, bringing total passenger numbers back in line with the peak recorded in 2007.

IATA represents some 230 airlines comprising 93% of scheduled international air traffic. The organization also represents, leads and serves the airline industry in general.